The rich get richer. On Tuesday, the Jaguars agreed to trade defensive end Dante Fowler to the Rams, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. In exchange, the Rams will send a 2019 third-round pick and a 2020 fifth-round pick to the Jaguars, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.
After investing heavily in their defensive line this offseason, the Rams certainly didn’t have to make this move. However, the aggressive front office in L.A. was unwilling to sit idly by and watch a former Top 5 draft pick go elsewhere.
The Jaguars fielded several calls on Fowler leading up to the deadline and the Rams apparently came to the table with the best offer of the bunch.
Fowler will offer edge rush support for a front seven that already features the likes of Aaron Donald, Ndamukong Suh, Michael Brockers, and Ethan Westbrooks. In limited playing time this year, Fowler notched two sacks and has played better than ever before, according to the advanced metrics at Pro Football Focus.
Fowler is in the final year of his rookie contract and the Rams have little breathing room under the cap, so it will be tough for the Rams to keep him beyond the 2018 season. In light of that, the price tag of a third-round pick and a fifth-round pick may seem steep, but it’s important to note that the Rams have plenty of draft ammo thanks to previous trades and compensatory picks.
With a disappointing 3-5 record, the Jaguars clearly recognize that their playoff hopes are dwindling. The Fowler trade does not mean they’re waving the white flag, per se, but it’s a signal that they are keeping an eye on their prospects for 2019.
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